Lowe's Informative - Disapointed
SOUTHGATE,, MICHIGAN -- In the last couple of weeks July, I decided to spend the money and have Lowes do my basement floor. I recently purchased the home and as per the city inspection, needed to "repair" the tiles on the basement floor. There were anywhere from 40-80 tiles that were broken off at the edges, or were loose enough to pick up. Being 9 inch tiles in a house that was built in 1950, in doing research both on-line and talking to people who have been installing tile for 30-40 years, I thought there was a high probability the tiles contained vinyl asbestes. Wanting to limit my exposure to them, I went to Lowe's to discuss/explore what my options were in encapsulating the tiles, and putting down a new surface.
I intentionally made several trips to Lowe's to talk face to face with a lady in the flooring department in an effort to find an acceptable solution to my problem. On one of my initial visits, the sales lady said that if I removed the old tiles, their contractors could not come in to the house due to the asbestos fibers that would be airborne. I paid $35
for an estimator from Lowe's to come out to the house and get a first hand & realistic impression of what I was dealing with. His summary:
he recommended not putting vinyl down due to the slopes in the floor.
He said in his report back to Lowe's he was going to recommend glued down carpet. When I checked back with Lowe's a few days later, the sales person told me the estimator's recommendation was rejected by the
manager that oversees the contractors and estmators. The new "recommendation" was to install carpet with tack strips along the edege of the floor. Meanwhile, I removed everything in my basement and
stacked/stored it in my backyard the night before the installed was scheduled to install the carpet. I had arranged for someone to help me take everything stored in the yard in the evening, after the carpet had been installed. Also, I had a plumber scheduled to come the next day, after the carpet was to be installed.
When the carpet installor showed up, he said he could not put down the tack strips because he'd have to drill through the abestos tiles which would create a dangerous dust, which I completely understand. He showed me a piece of paper he'd received from the salesperson at Lowe's. It was a document in which I was not given a copy of. On the document the installer had, there was a list of 8 stipulations
The last one said "custamer will remove floor tiles..(sic)prior to the carpet being installed. Note-this statement was written over something that had had white out applied to it. I wasn't able to figure out what had been written under the white out. The installer said he would come back on Wednesday-giving me two days to remove the asbestes tiles. I had to re-schedule the plumbers apointment for Tuesday and then go through the stress leaving my belongings outside for 3 nights instead of 1, hoping nothing was stolen, or that the grass would die.
I was able to remove the tile and thoroughly clean the basement floor, hosing it down and completely eilimanating all the powder, dust, etc as well as the abestes tiles.
About 3 days ago (about 6 weeks after spending $1400 to Lowe's to install the carpet) there was a minimal amount of sewer back up due to some heavy rains and now I have carpet that is wet. Both the estimator and the installor said the sales personnel at Lowe's don't know really kknow the "ins and outs" of the realities of putting down new flooring.
I specifically stopped in to Lowe's to talk face to face with someone, several times in order to have things done in an acceptable manner. Despite my effort and plans, I now have a carpeted basement that is sopping wet due to the sewer back up. The sewer back up isn't Lowe's fault, but had I'd been given the correct information to begin with, I would not be dealing with the dilemna I have now.
I am in the process of waiting to hear from the head managers at the Southgate (MI) store. I will write again with an update with how things turn out. My advice to someone who needs any type of contractual work done on their house; DON'T have it done through Lowe's. In the last year, I've sought advice numberous times from employees at Lowe's. While almost of it was good, I ran in to a few people who gave me the impression they were trying to sound like they were giving me legitimate answers but realy didn't know what they were talking about. Perhaps they were afraid of losing their job instead of being honest with me and just saying "I don't know, but let me find someone who does". The last sentence was recited to me several time, allowing me to find someone who was able to answer my question. I've also ran in to knowledgeable people in the store that gave me occasional bad advice. I can deal with employees who are fearful of losing their jobs, and also competent people who don't know everything. The experience I had with the salespeople in the flooring department is competely unacceptable and perhaps enters the area of being fruadulent. Again, I will write with an update desribing whether or not the manager is willing to offer me an solution that in proportion to the amount of money I spent and is in line with the problem in which I first approached them.